Sustainable learning in education

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This article presents a theoretical definition and conceptualization of sustainable learning in education (SLE). SLE is differentiated from teaching for sustainability or sustainable learning, which focuses on teaching ways to renew, rejuvenate, and reuse necessary resources, such as clean water. At its core, SLE consists of strategies and skills that enable learners to effectively renew, rebuild, reuse, inquire, be open-minded, and cope with challenging and complicated circumstances that require learning and relearning. Four aspects of SLE are described: (1) renewing and relearning; (2) independent and collaborative learning; (3) active learning; and (4) transferability. To further understand SLE, the self-regulated learning framework is used. This is an important and novel future direction for research and educational practice.

Original languageEnglish
Article number4250
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2 Apr 2021


  • Development
  • Education
  • Learning
  • Sustainability
  • Transferability

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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